News, Statistics, Trades, Rumors, Signings, Videos, Insight

Covering anything hockey but mostly stories involving my favourite team, the Toronto Maple Leafs. I try to update the blog every day or two and encourage comments and suggestions. Some of my influences are TSN's Darren Dreger and Bob McKenzie. Enjoy







Friday, October 15, 2010

Average spread of talent in the NHL

Some old stats I stumbled upon that I had researched a few months ago.
- Felt they were worth noting

The following are the total number of players who fit into each scoring category, by season, for the past 3 NHL seasons:

Goals          07-08       08-09       09-10Average
20+102120110110.7
25+63695863.3
30+28392430.3
40+10878.3
50+3132.3
Assists       07-08        08-09       09-10
30+107119115113.7
40+54534851.7
50+20201518.3
60+5856.0
70+0211.0
Points       07-08       08-09       09-10
50+106109102105.7
60+63625560.0
70+39403036.3
80+19171717.7
90+8777.3
100+2343.0


The following charts display the average number of players a team will have from each scoring category.





Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Predicted Final standings and Award Winners

  
2010-11 season predicted standings (Sept. 28, 2010)

East

1. Washington
2. New Jersey
3. Boston
4. Pittsburgh
5. Buffalo
6. Philadelphia
7. Tampa Bay
8. Ottawa
----------------
9. Montreal
10. Toronto
11. New York Rangers
12. Atlanta
13. Carolina
14. Florida
15. New York Islanders







West
1. Vancouver
2. San Jose
3. Chicago
4. Los Angeles
5. Detroit
6. Phoenix
7. St. Louis
8. Anaheim
----------------
9. Colorado
10. Nashville
11. Dallas
12. Calgary
13. Minnesota
14. Edmonton
15. Columbus

AWARD WINNERS:

Art Ross: Sidney Crosby
Rocket Richard: Alex Ovechkin
Hart: Sidney Crosby
Norris: Drew Doughty
Vezina: Tukka Rask
Lindsay: Sidney Crosby
Calder: Jordan Eberle
Byng: Martin St. Louis
Selke: Pavol Datsyuk
Messier: Sidney Crosby
Adams: Terry Murray

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Playoffs: First round predictions

First round playoff predictions

East
Washington/Montreal:  Capitals in 5
New Jersey/Philadelphia: Flyers in 7
Buffalo/Boston:  Sabres in 6
Pittsburgh/Ottawa:  Penguins in 5

West
San Jose/Colorado: Sharks in 4
Chicago/Nashville: Blackhawks in 5
Vancouver/Los Angeles: Canucks in 5
Phoenix/Detroit: Wings in 6

Monday, April 12, 2010

2010 NHL Playoffs


Its Playoff time and every year I like to make my own tree to keep track of each team's progress throughout their run.

As per usual, I'am backing the Penguins as my Eastern team and the Canucks in the West so ideally either Sid gets yet another cup to rub in Ovie's face or the cup finally reuturns to Canada after 17 long years. (Plus that was the habs that last won so it's not fun anyway)

Anyways not much to say atm but GO NUCKS!!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Toronto's going to have a tough time aquiring a high-level forward for at least a couple years

First of all let's start by examining what the leafs have to work with draft-wise in the next two entry drafts:

2010 Entry draft picks:
3rd round (Toronto)
4th round (Phoenix)
5th round (New Jersey)
5th round (Toronto)
7th round (Phoenix)
7th round (Toronto)

2011 Picks
2nd round (Toronto)
4th round (Toronto)
5th (Toronto)
6th (Toronto)
7th (Toronto)
7th (Anaheim)

What I see here is a clear lack of quality picks coupled with a relatively low quantity given that we're in a supposed "rebuilding" phase.

Now heres a look at some interesting statistics regarding the ages, draft positions and other methods of acquiring top level NHL players:

Current scoring leaders and draft positions (as of 6pm March 3rd):

Name - Draft round/number (age) d: drafted by current team, t: traded to current team

1. Ovechkin - 1/1 (24) d
2. H. Sedin - 1/3 (29) d
3. Crosby - 1/1 (22) d
4. Thornton - 1/1 (30) t
5. Backstrom - 1/4 (22) d
6. St. Louis - Undrafted (34) t (traded early in career)
7. Stamkos - 1/1 (20) d
8. Kane - 1/1 (21) d
9. Gaborik - 1/3 (28) t
10. B. Richards - 3/64 (29) t
11. Heatley - 1/2 (29) t
12. Malkin - 1/2 (23) d
13. Kopitar - 1/11 (22) d
14. Kovalchuk - 1/1 (26) t
15. Semin - 1/13 (25) d
16. Marleau - 1/2 (30) d
17. Parise - 1/17 (25) d
18. Getzlaf - 1/19 (24) d
19. Plekanec - 3/71 (27) d
20. Green - 1/29 (24) d
21. Perry - 1/28 (24) d
22. Nash - 1/1 (25) d
23. Iginla - 1/11 (32) t (traded in draft year)
24. M. Koivu - 1/6 (26) d
25. Lecavalier - 1/1 (29) d
26. D. Sedin - 1/2 (29) d
27. Connolly - 1/5 (28) t (traded 2 years after draft)
28. Kesler - 1/23 (25) d
29. Statsny - 2/44 (24) d
30. Eriksson - 2/33 (24) d

- Average age: 26
- Average draft position: ~13th overall
- 25/30 drafted in 1st round
- 2/30 2nd round
- 2/30 3rd round
- 1/30 undrafted
- 22/25 drafted in 1st round
- 8 first overall picks
- 5 of top 8 are 1st overall picks
- 10 of top 12 drafted 4th overall or earlier
- 17 of 30 drafted 10th overall or earlier
- 22/30 remain on same team they were drafted by
- 25/30 still on the same team they were farmed with

What this essentially tells us is that top notch NHL scorers are almost unconditionally acquired through the draft and are typically selected in the first round. Toronto will have some serious difficulty getting their hands on a franchise player without a first round pick in the next two drafts. It also shows how much the Kessel deal will impact the future of the team as the lottery pick we would have had for the 2010 draft has huge potential to produce a marquee player. If the leafs continue on their current path, Boston is likely to receive a top 3 selection and acquire the potential franchise forward which Toronto badly needs.

Top Goaltenders by GAA (Min 30 games played):

1. Rask - 1/21 (22) t (traded before any NHL games)
2. Miller - 5/138 (29) d
3. Kiprusoff - 5/116 (33) t
4. Howard - 2/64 (25) d
5. Nabokov - 9/219 (34) d
6. Huet - 7/214 (34) t
7. Brodeur - 1/20 (37) d
8. Luongo - 1/4 (30) t
9. Vokoun - 9/226 (33) t
10. Bryzgalov - 2/44 (29) t
11. Lundqvist - 7/205 (27) d
12. Anderson - 3/73 (28) t
13. Quick - 3/72 (24) d
14. Mason - 5/122 (33) t
15. Thomas - 9/217 (35) t (before any NHL games)

- Average age: 30.2
- Average draft position: ~117th overall
- 3/15 drafted in the 1st round
- 2/15 2nd round
- 5/15 3rd-5th rounds
- 5/15 6th round or later
- Basically goaltenders are very difficult to predict
- 8/15 still on the same team they were farmed with

As the numbers display, drafting a successful goaltender requires a lot of luck (wide spread of draft rounds) . It is much harder for scouts to accurately predict a goalies future at such a young age than it is for that of a scoring forward. Trading for an elite goaltender however is a lot easier than trying to trade for an elite forward as teams often give up on a goalie before he reaches the apex of his career. The average age for a successful NHL goalie is about 30 right now so clearly they take longer to develop. With our abundance of late picks and current uncertainty in the crease, drafting a goalie might be a good idea in the upcoming draft

Top defencemen based on minutes played/game:

(There are several stats I could have used for defencemen but I felt this was the most comprehensive) 

1. Pitkanen - 1/4 (26)
2. Keith - 2/54 (26)
3. Bouwmeester - 1/3 (26)
4. Niedermayer - 1/3 (36)
5. Boyle - Undrafted (33)
6. Pronger - 1/2 (35)
7. Lidstrom - 3/53 (39)
8. Streit - 9/262 (32)
9. Beauchemin - 3/75 (29)
10. Chara - 3/56 (32)
11. Corvo - 4/83 (32)
12. Green - 1/29 (24)
13. Gonchar - 1/14 (35)
14. Doughty - 1/2 (20)
15. Whitney - 1/5 (27)
16. Rafalski - Undrafted (36)
17. Greene - Undrafted (27)
18. Robidas - 7/164 (32)
19. Quincey - 4/132 (24)
20. Markov - 6/162 (31)
21. Wisniewski - 5/156 (26)
22. Suter - 1/7 (25)
23. Seabrook - 1/14 (24)
24. Wideman - 8/241 (26)
25. Stuart - 1/3 (30)
26. Zidlicky - 6/176 (33)
27. Hamrlik - 1/1 (35)
28. Myers - 1/12 (20)
29. Campbell - 6/156 (30)
30. Phaneuf - 1/9 (24)

- Average age: 29.17
- Average draft position: ~70th overall
- Average draft position (top 15): ~46th overall
- 14/30 drafted in 1st round
- 1/30 in 2nd round
- 7/30 3rd-5th rounds
- 6/30 6th or later
- 3/30 undrafted
- 10/30 drafted in the top 10 overall

The leafs are looking fairly secure on defence now so drafting/trading for a top notch defenceman probably won't be a priority. The ability to draft top defenders without a 1st round pick is clearly possible but close to half of the top 30 were indeed selected in that round. Perhaps using some of the later picks to select defencemen and goalies rather than forwards provides the best odds of finding that diamond in the rough and producing elite talent. Even if the type of player selected does not quite meet our current needs, that player might be of high value to other teams and could provide a good return in the future.

The Leaf's 3 most pressing needs at this point are (a) Scoring forwards, (b) a Captain and (c) a Goalie
There are also 3 basic ways of acquiring players:
- Drafting
- Trading
- Free agency
I have already showed that we will not get a high-end forward through the draft anytime too soon with our lack of early picks and trading for such talent is extremely difficult in today's NHL. With all the long-term, big money contracts being handed out to the top players, trading will not address our scoring needs. Then comes the free agency which could potentially include a top notch NHL forward but it is rare and there are few impending options available over the next few years.
Burkie does certainly enjoy signing a lot of college free agents and has had some success with Jonas Hiller in Anaheim and Bozak looking promising for the Leafs. Maybe we'll get lucky and nab late bloomer like Martin St. Louis from the college ranks or some alternate league.

Ultimately, I feel we are kind of in somewhat of a bind when it comes to filling all the forward gaps in the lineup but hopefully Burke can work some magic and somehow get it done..

Monday, February 15, 2010

Some interesting NHL statistics as the olympic break begins..

  • Plus/Minus leaders: 
- 6 of the top 10 +/- leaders are from Washington
- the top 4 are all from the Capitals
Top 5 
Alexander Ovechkin: +43
Jeff Shultz: +37
Nicklas Backstrom: +32
Mike Green: +28
Alexandre Burrows: +28
  •  Shorthanded goals:
- Marian Hossa leads with 5 despite only having played in 37 games this season
  •  Game winning goals:
- Daniel Sedin has won the game for his team with 7 of his 16 goals
  • Division Points:
- Despite being in probably the toughest division in the East, Crosby leads the NHL with 15 division goals and 30 points in 18 Atlantic division games.
  • Game misconducts:
- Alex Ovechkin is the only player to have had 2 game misconducts this year..
  • Hits:
- For the second consecutive year, Minnesota's 22 year old Cal Clutterbuck leads the NHL in hits with 252. Thats an average of 4.66 hits/game, almost a hit-per-game better than the next best hitter, Ryan Callahan.
- Clutterbuck, Callahan, Brooks Orpik and Dustin Brown have been 4 of the top 5 hitters for 2 years running.
  • Giveaways:
- 3 of the top 5 leaders in giveaways are Montreal Canadiens defencemen: Jaroslav Spacek (1st), Roman Hamrlik (2nd) and Hal Gill (5th).
  • Shots on goal:
- For all 5 years of Ovechkin's NHL career he has led the league in shots on goal, quite a feat..
- Ovie's 5.2 shots per game are down from last years 6.6, however his shooting percentage is up 4% from last season so he's making his shots more worthwhile.
-  Sidney Crosby is firing and average of 3.7 shots/game and has one of the leagues best shooting percentage at 18.6%. Crosby has not only benefited through more goals this season but his shooting success has risen by over 4% from his previous year's average.
- While Ovechkin is typically considered to be the best goal scorer in the league, his shooting numbers look less impressive than Crosby's this year.
  •  Time on ice:
- Ovechkin and Crosby have averaged an almost identical time-on-ice/game this season ranking 4th (21:51) and 5th (21:49) respectively in average ice time for forwards.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Phaneuf swagger and some Ovechkin..

The Dion Phaneuf swagger:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3W8lTZAslqw

Ovechkin's top 10 goals video I made last April:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrckZNzSCjk

plus one more which would probably take over the number 4 spot:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-D4fBkdnoU